Quotes by Leo Tolstoy


Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.
– Leo Tolstoy
A man can live and be healthy without killing animals for food; therefore, if he eats meat, he participates in taking animal life merely for the sake of his appetite.
– Leo Tolstoy
All violence consists in some people forcing others, under threat of suffering or death, to do what they do not want to do.
– Leo Tolstoy
And all people live, Not by reason of any care they have for themselves, But by the love for them that is in other people.
– Leo Tolstoy
And Levin, a happy father and a man in perfect health, was several times so near suicide that he hid the cord, lest he be tempted to hang himself, and was afraid to go out with his gun, for fear of shooting himself. But Levin did not shoot himself, and did not hang himself; he went on living.
– Leo Tolstoy
Art is not a handicraft, it is the transmission of feeling the artist has experienced.
– Leo Tolstoy
Boredom: the desire for desires.
– Leo Tolstoy
But the peasants - how do the peasants die?
– Leo Tolstoy
Even in the valley of the shadow of death, two and two do not make six.
– Leo Tolstoy
Faith is the sense of life, that sense by virtue of which man does not destroy himself, but continues to live on. It is the force whereby we live.
– Leo Tolstoy
Government is an association of men who do violence to the rest of us.
– Leo Tolstoy
He never chooses an opinion; he just wears whatever happens to be in style.
– Leo Tolstoy
Hypocrisy in anything whatever may deceive the cleverest and most penetrating man, but the least wide-awake of children recognizes it, and is revolted by it, however ingeniously it may be disguised.
– Leo Tolstoy
I sit on a man's back, choking him and making him carry me, and yet assure myself and others that I am very sorry for him and wish to ease his lot by all possible means - except by getting off his back.
– Leo Tolstoy
If so many men, so many minds, certainly so many hearts, so many kinds of love.
– Leo Tolstoy
If there existed no external means for dimming their consciences, one-half of the men would at once shoot themselves, because to live contrary to one's reason is a most intolerable state, and all men of our time are in such a state.
– Leo Tolstoy
If you want to be happy, be.
– Leo Tolstoy
In all history there is no war which was not hatched by the governments, the governments alone, independent of the interests of the people, to whom war is always pernicious even when successful.
– Leo Tolstoy
It is amazing how complete is the delusion that beauty is goodness.
– Leo Tolstoy
Love is life. All, everything that I understand, I understand only because I love. Everything is, everything exists, only because I love. Everything is united by it alone. Love is God, and to die means that I, a particle of love, shall return to the general and eternal source.
– Leo Tolstoy